Archive for tag: seminars

A Week of Firsts

Just as the hype of boards has died down, I've been keeping myself plenty busy with activities at school!


This week at NUHS, we hosted our first Trivia Night for students, faculty and staff. Our very own Dr. Robert Shiel organized the entire event, being the trivia master that he is! Categories consisted of The Simpsons, Geography, U.S. History, Classic Movies, Art and Literature, Sports, Music, and Current Events since 2015. I was a member of the team "The Fighting Oxymorons," and we ended up earning 2nd place in the tournament! We hope to keep the tradition going annually!


Another first held this week was the Motion Palpation Institute's (MPI) first Sports Summit, held here in Illinois. Motion Palpation, or "Mo Pal" as we call it at school, is a national organization that teaches chiropractic students and physicians to analyze the spine by palpating for certain segmental restrictions and them adjusting patients to increase motion in those segments.


MPI is run by some of the country's best chiropractic physicians, and this weekend they all came together to present on various methods for treating athletes. We covered topics such as Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilization, McKenzie Method, myofascial taping techniques, Functional Movement Systems of assessment, and a variety of soft tissue mobilization methods. All of these tools are widely utilized for assessing pain and dysfunction in athletes, and then finding ways to improve the areas of dysfunction and prevent further injury. Some of the greatest leaders each presented on their topics of expertise, and we as students had the chance to pick their brains and learn from all their clinical experience. We also had the opportunity to meet students from other chiropractic schools such as Palmer, Logan and NYCC.

It was a fun-filled weekend of listening and learning from some of the greatest minds in our profession, and it's always a great opportunity to add new experiences to our "doctor's toolbox" when treating future patients!

Webster Technique

In an effort to continue to expand my skills and techniques, I traveled to Columbus, Ohio, this past weekend to take the Perinatal Care: Webster Certification course of the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association's diplomate program. This first module offers the opportunity to learn and become certified in Webster Technique, a method of diagnosis and treatment for correcting dysfunction in the pelvis of pregnant women.

Good morning from the beautiful city of Chicago!

The Webster Technique has been taught by Dr. Jeanne Ohm for over 30 years, and she has truly changed the lives of so many women with whom she has worked. The concept of Webster is to optimize pelvic function, alignment, and movement, in order to potentially decrease the difficulties associated with pregnancy and labor. The protocol consists of analyzing the direction in which the sacrum may be fixated, increasing motion in the pelvic joints, and affecting the correlated soft tissue structures such as muscles and ligaments. The technique has tremendous success with easing pain and challenges associated with pregnancy, so women are always searching the online database for local Webster providers. It is exciting to have earned my certification and be able to work with this population of patients! :)

The entire seminar was so inspiring. We discussed the changes in obstetric care over the decades and how chiropractic care can offer tremendous relief for women seeking alternative options during their pregnancy. It was so empowering, realizing that I am going to make these important changes in women's lives, and in the lives of their future children.

National has always been a very science-based chiropractic program, aiming to train its students as primary care physicians. Although we don't focus too much on the traditional philosophy of our profession, this weekend taught me how important it is to keep an open mind about this topic. Some chiropractic schools really focus on the concepts of innate intelligence and subluxation, and although National does not, Jeanne Ohm truly made a valid argument: Despite what each of us believes, she kept emphasizing that "Life is intelligent," and there is no reason to argue with that.

Two cells can come together and develop into a fully functioning human being. Pregnancy and birth have been occurring in our species since the beginning of time, and it is important to realize that the body truly does know what it is doing. Life IS intelligent, in that even before the development of modern medicine, miracles have been occurring naturally and without all of the interventions we use today. Maybe it's time that we take a different approach to the way we bring infants into this world, and the way in which we support a woman's natural ability to carry and care for a child.

McKenzie Method and Tri Mixer

McKenzie Method

Recently at NUHS, I attended a weekend course taught by The McKenzie Institute USA. This educational foundation has developed a method to diagnose and treat patients suffering with musculoskeletal pain originating from the spine and extremities. Robin McKenzie was the founder of this institution, which began researching disorders of the musculoskeletal system in 1982. Since its beginning, McKenzie Method was utilized primarily by physical therapists, but it has in recent years become more accessible to chiropractic physicians.

(Photo courtesy of The McKenzie Institute, New Zealand)

One of the most unique features of McKenzie Method is the concept that patients have the power and responsibility to help treat themselves through exercises and lifestyle modifications. This also adds a component of compliance to each patient's treatment plan, assuming that they will actively work to help correct and maintain proper posture and movement patterns. McKenzie treatment involves the patient in actively caring for their symptoms, which has an empowering effect that is able to eliminate pain for each person in the end.

I was enrolled in the Part A course, the first of the series toward certification that is geared toward focusing on the lumbar spine. With our class size of about 20 people, an even mix of both students and practicing doctors, we were able to work hands-on with two patients who were coming in complaining of low back pain. We practiced running through a McKenzie-based physical examination, taking a thorough history with the patient, and going through the diagnostic protocol that are used to help identify the classification of different pain presentations.

Once we were able to identify the type of mechanical back pain we were dealing with, we proceeded to work on exercises with each patient to help reduce and relieve their pain in different regions. The most rewarding aspect of the weekend was to see both of the patients leave the seminar with a reduction in their low back pain as well as in their radiating pain.

Getting to work with current DCs throughout the seminar was such a tremendous experience, and there was much clinical knowledge to be gained from these doctors! I even had the opportunity to meet Dr. Anthony Hamm, the current president of the American Chiropractic Association! In a couple weeks, we will be returning to complete Part A of the seminar.

Now that I am an intern in clinic, I'm beginning to hone in on what seminars I hope to take in the next year and what types of additional skills I want to obtain for practice. At National and in the Chicago area, there are so many tremendous seminars and certifications available for us as students. With all of the developments in the field of medicine, it will be valuable to have other skill sets such as McKenzie to offer to my future patients when I am in practice.



Last Friday night was our tri-mixer where all of the students were invited to come out and meet each other. As an officer for Student Council who helped plan the event, it's always fulfilling to see tons of students come and participate in social events! The cold and the snow can't hold us back from enjoying a weekend night out with friends (like my friend KC and I)! :)

The Eagle Has Found Its Nest

All right, so my title is a bit silly, but it's also quite fitting. This week, students, faculty, and staff joined together to celebrate the grand opening of the Eagle's Nest at our Lombard campus.

Move that bus!

The Eagle's Nest is the new "student hub" here at NUHS, serving as a place for people to congregate for lunch, conversation, study-breaks, and relaxation. The Eagle's Nest is open 24/7 and is now the best location available on campus for students wishing to study at any hour of the day. Beginning the first day, students and faculty have been taking advantage of this gorgeous new lounge located in Janse Hall. This was a much-needed space for students, who have been looking for a casual place to relax between classes and gather with friends.

With President Stiefel in the Eagle's Nest

We also held a mascot-naming contest in October to promote school spirit and get students involved. Our official NUHS mascot is "Fitz" the Eagle, named after our institution's founding father, John Fitz Alan Howard.

Eagle Pride

Integrative Pediatric Care

Over the weekend, I took a course offered by our Lincoln College of Postprofessional, Graduate and Continuing Education titled "Pediatrics for the Integrative Medicine Practitioner." The instructor, Dr. Robert Dumont, is an MD who realizes the importance of integrative medicine and utilizes natural therapies to help relieve children of illness.

We covered different therapies such as traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture, homeopathic medicine, and dietary modifications. All of these categories of therapies can be utilized and combined to naturally treat common pediatric conditions without intervention of pharmaceuticals.

One of the biggest concepts I took away from the seminar was the importance of diet and nutrition in childhood wellness. Food sensitivities to dairy, soy, and gluten can have a myriad of negative effects on different systems throughout the body, and they present as an incredibly diverse array of symptoms. Sometimes, a thorough lifestyle evaluation and simple observation of the child tell us exactly where the problem is arising, and exactly where we can intervene. It was a very unique and beneficial seminar that provided me with great reference material for treating children in my future practice!

Opportunities Outside the Classroom

Things have been getting busier here at National. Spring has sprung! (Well, kind of.) Aside from the unfortunate rainy days and 50-degree temperatures, campus activity is picking up and everyone is antsy for summer!

This week, students enjoyed our beginning-of-the-tri Club Lunch Day, catered by Chipotle and sponsored by Student Council. On Friday at lunch, all active clubs were represented at tables throughout our gymnasium, offering the opportunity for new students to learn more about and potentially join each student organization. I think it's safe to say that everyone enjoyed the delicious meal and many clubs gained new prospective members! It's great to see younger students getting involved in our school.

Saturday morning, many students drove downtown to attend the Chiropractic Wellness Symposium, organized by Cancer Treatment Centers of America. We had the opportunity to learn about functional endocrinology and a chiropractor's role in treating autoimmune disorders, diabetes, and other widespread diseases. What an amazing experience! I walked away from that seminar with such inspiration and hope! Chiropractic and all other alternative medical professions need to embrace the impact we can have on human health. We truly do have the power to change people's lives. :)


After exploring downtown Chicago a little bit after the seminar, we drove back to Lombard, just in time for a youth soccer game. My friends Brandon and Jake are earning off-campus service hours by volunteering as coaches for a 4- to 5-year-old soccer league in our community of Lombard.


In case you were not aware, one of the requirements of the DC and ND programs at National is to participate in a certain amount of on- and off-campus service hours before graduating. Many clubs on campus offer opportunities for students to gain these hours, but the most rewarding experiences are those when students get involved with our community.


For Brandon and Jake, this soccer league is simply about encouraging kids to be active and involved at a young age. However, for these adorable kids, kicking the ball in the right direction is an accomplishment enough! Best of all, the parents are excited to see local students being involved in the community, and we are able to represent our university with high spirits and good will!